August 19, 2007 marked a very significant date in the annuals of Sacred Heart Monastery. Eleven members of our Oblate Program committed themselves into a union with God, our community and themselves as covenant members, seeking God under the Gospel and in the spirit of Saints Benedict and Scholastica. The ceremony climaxed two years of discerning and sharing a study of the Rule, an introduction into ‘Lectio Divina’ (quiet reading) and times for sharing in the life of the community here in Lisle. The ceremony took place in the afternoon in the presence of the Oblates families. Afterwards we shared refreshments with the Benedictine Monastic Community.
Today we are journeying with 25 oblates who are deeply enriching our lives.
Our Oblates readily offer themselves to various needs at the Monastery from office work, mailings, and answering our phones when Sisters are not available. The best way to describe our program is to hear some of our Oblate’s comments:
"…life as an Oblate has provided me with peace like no other. God is the center of my life”. (Carol, Oblate)
“…God’s goodness is on my mind everywhere I go; whether at home in my work or with my friends”. (Maria, Oblate)
“…I hope that by being a part of the Oblate program, I will learn to integrate Benedict’s way of love and peace and share it with my family and community”. (Jane, Oblate)
The Oblate Program is open to men and women wishing to join the program as they “Seek God in Community Life and Respond in Prayer and Ministry”. Contact Sister Karen Nykiel at (630) 725-6011, for further information.
Living Ordinary Life with Extraordinary Love” has been the theme of the lay women and men who have been associated with Sacred Heart Monastery since 2003. We began our journey as “Associates” and in the fall of 2006, we will enter into an Oblate program. I am most humbled to be a part of this monastery’s Oblate program. I feel the warmth and love of the Sisters each time I come to help with tasks in the monastery. Living according to the Rule of St. Benedict, means approaching each hour of the day, and each task of that hour as a gift from God. This helps me appreciate this wonderful world and each person in it. I hope that by being a part of the Oblate program, I will learn to integrate Benedict’s way of love and peace and share it with my family and community."
Jane Doyle, Oblate
"I am a daughter, wife, mother and a child of God. God is the center of my life. In my prayer, I have always asked God what it is that I am to do. Now, with .my association with the Benedictine Order I am receiving direction and balance as the Spirit of God leads me to people who need help. This life as an Oblate has provided me with peace like no other. I look forward to many more enriching years as a Benedictine Oblate."
Carole Gravelle, Oblate
"Accepting the invitation to be a Benedictine Oblate at the Sacred Heart Monastery has special meaning in my life. The Benedictine Sisters, who taught me in Elementary School, served as exceptional role models not to be forgotten in later years. Reading about Saint Benedict and his Rule has instilled in me a desire to follow his example of leading a God-filled life. I am encouraged to do spiritual reading and “listen with the ear of my heart” to the voice of God within me. Sharing in evening Vespers at the Monastery is to experience a feeling of peace and joy. Setting aside a portion of the day for prayer can be very compatible with a lay person’s daily responsibilities. This relationship with the Benedictine Sisters and Oblates has increased my faith awareness and a desire to share with family members, neighbors and acquaintances the recognition of the presence of God in our lives."
Arlene Malloy, Oblate